Photo by Lincoln County Detention Center
Justin Ray Vieyra
Police swarmed to a house near the middle of town late Sunday afternoon, where a North Platte man was allegedly stabbed as he tried to help his girlfriend.Justin Ray Vieyra, 36, is charged with attempted murder and related crimes.
The girlfriend was under assault by Vieyra, her former boyfriend, at Vieyra's home at 115 ½ S. Walnut, near the intersection of Walnut and B St., according to police reports.
The victim was treated for severe cuts on his arms at Great Plains Health medical center and later released, police spokesman John Deal said. He has not been named.
Deal said when police went to the home at 5:27 p.m., they found a 33-year-old woman and a 44-year-old man in the street.
Deal said the suspect, Vieyra, was still in the home, but officers were able to talk him into coming out, and he was taken into custody without further incident.
The man had severe cuts to his arms and was taken via ambulance to Great Plains Health.
Based on statements from the victims and Vieyra, police believe that Vieyra and the woman were previously in a dating relationship.
The woman reportedly agreed to meet Vieyra at his home to talk about their prior problems
They got into an argument. She said Vieyra locked the front door and refused to allow her to leave. Police believe he threw a chair and hit her with it.
She tried to lock herself in the bathroom, but Vieyra pinned the door open and choked her, cutting off her breathing, according to the police report.
Earlier, the woman texted her current boyfriend and “indicated the situation wasn’t going well,” Deal said.
Her boyfriend arrived at the house and said he heard the woman screaming as he neared the front door. He told police he kicked at the front door, and his foot went through the lower half of the door.
Deal said the door was made of thin wood, which broke when the man kicked it. It is believed his intent was to get Vieyra’s attention and allow his girlfriend to escape, interrupting the attack on his girlfriend.
But Vieyra attacked him. The woman said Vieyra had told her if her boyfriend showed up, he was going to kill him. The woman said Vieyra retrieved a large kitchen knife, ran to the front door and repeatedly stabbed at her boyfriend through the hole in the door. Meanwhile, she got out the back door. Her boyfriend backed away from the front door and officers arrived a short time later, Deal said.
The current boyfriend said as he approached the front door, Vieyra yelled he was going to kill him. He had several large cuts on his arms that required numerous sutures, Deal said.
Afterwards, police retrieved the knife. The evidence in the house supported the account of the events, as told by the victims, Deal said.
Vieyra is not only chargd with attempted second-degree murder, he also faces charges of use of a deadly weapon to commit a felony, false imprisonment, strangulation and domestic assault.
In court Monday afternoon, Lincoln County Court Judge Kent Turnbull set bond at $1 million and told Vieyra he faces up to 50 years in prison if convicted.
Lincoln County Deputy County Attorney Kortnei Hoeft asked for a $1 million bond “due to the violent nature of the crime.”
Defense Attorney Robert Lindemeier, who had just been contacted by Vieyra’s family and would be hired represent him, said a lower amount is appropriate.
“He is not a flight risk,” Lindemeier said. “It happened on his property and he did not flee. My client is a lifelong resident, has two children and is employed.”
“The bond is to assure he shows up, not to punish him,” Lindemeier argued. “I will make sure he makes his court date. There are no failure-to-appear charges on his past records.”
Turnbull said he understood Lindemeier’s argument, but did not believe a lesser bond would be appropriate.
“I know he comes from a wonderful family, but the bond will be $1 million,” he said. “It is not (that) high because of flight risk, but because of his mental state.”
Turnbull said he would consider the bond situation at Vieyra’s next court appearance, which will be held within two weeks.
(This report was updated Monday morning and again in the afternoon. -Editor)